#RadicalChildcare is an initiative to inspire, imagine, explore and invest into the future for children and families in Birmingham.

Back in April 2015, Amy Martin of F A M A L A M shared her vision for a childcare utopia founded on interrogating and subverting existing models of childcare to fit her needs as a nomadic worker and mum in the 21st Century. At the same time here at Impact Hub Birmingham we were thinking about why we were disillusioned with the fast venture business approach to solving complex problems, and these narratives collided to plant the seeds of a now growing #RadicalChildcare movement.

Early in 2016, we developed a proposal for this two-year place-based system change initiative which explains our new methodology, bringing together 10 years of practical experience in movement building around purpose-driven entrepreneurship, developing accelerator and social investment programmes, and systems thinking about city-regions. Through 6-9 months of development work, we will be refining our methodology through a number of activities, with a view to launch the initiative at full scale in 2018. We believe that by unlocking the power of all of us, we can generate deep impact and we are open to everyone to join us on this journey.

Children as citizens and changemakers

Children remain mostly invisible in our cities, access to good quality play is becoming compromised and the Private Voluntary and Independent (PVI) sector – the main deliverer of the government’s free childcare scheme – is also facing chronic underfunding. Coupled with poor pay for workers, a highly gendered workforce and parents experiencing multiple levels of discrimination and/or lack of support, especially during the early years, it soon became clear that our efforts should become focused on a wider systems-focused movement.

In Birmingham, radical change remains particularly crucial given that a third of children are living in poverty.

Recognising that some parts of our city are home to over 46% of children living in poor households, we started to imagine a movement that could deploy financial, human and social capital to invest in a better future for Birmingham’s children and so #RadicalChildcare was born.

Children and families at the forefront

We believe that children and families should be at the forefront of the #RadicalChildcare movement. We are already seeing huge benefits in designing an intergenerational learning community, a place where families can co-construct safer, healthier, more resilient communities together and continue to welcome children and families to join the community whether as part of our Children's membership or other programmes and events.
Our Children's Membership gives children access to our weekly pop-up crèche facility on a Thursday morning and is available in conjunction with any Impact Hub Birmingham membership.
Our pop-up crèche facility offers a high quality, safe, all-encompassing provision to babies (4 months and up), toddlers and pre-schoolers, all led by experienced artists and early years practitioners.

Parent Perspectives


“Childcare feels reflective of a wider societal idea that everyone should be in 9-5 jobs, so you give your child to someone…

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“I’d like to have more time with my son when he is full of energy, rather than when he’s winding down in the evenings a…

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“I’ve achieved a lot in my professional life, whereas family life is a new challenge for me.” Daniella i…

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“Before I had kids I was told, ‘your life won’t change much, but your wife’s life will’, and that actually kind of …

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“Developing my sons’ understanding of the culture and communities of which they are a part is important, as well as them …

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“People are driven to want something more; they move on to other areas, better houses, meaning life-long community relation…

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